First House Republican comes out in favor of investigating Trump

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A single House Republican has come out in support of investigating a whistleblower complaint against President Donald Trump, Fox News reports.

Rep. Mark Amodei (R-NV) made it clear to reporters on Friday that he’s not ready to vote to impeach the president, but thinks an investigation is warranted as a measure of “oversight.”

“I’m a big fan of oversight, so let’s let the committees get to work and see where it goes,”  Amodei said to reporters. The congressman went on to express concern over a July 25 phone call between Trump and Ukraine President Volodymyr Zelensky, and wanted to know more about Trump’s request that Zelensky investigate Joe Biden, a possible future political opponent.

“Using government agencies to, if it’s proven, to put your finger on the scale of an election, I don’t think that’s right,” Amodei said. “If it turns out that it’s something along those lines, then there’s a problem.”

Don’t say “impeachment”

By late Friday afternoon, Amodei’s office had already begun to clarify his remarks after a number of news outlets rans stories saying Amodei supported impeachment or at least an impeachment inquiry, according to The Washington Post.

His office denied support for the impeachment inquiry announced on Tuesday by House Speaker Nancy Pelosi, saying instead that he was for handing the whistleblower complaint off to intelligence committees in the House and Senate to be vetted. That action was unanimous in both houses of Congress.

Amodei also pointed out that he had twice supported a resolution by House Minority Leader Kevin McCarthy (R-CA) disapproving Pelosi’s choice to launch an impeachment inquiry without holding a vote of the entire House, as the law requires.

Logan Tucker, a spokesman for Amodei, said that the congressman did not “stand with the 223 Democrats” who have said they would vote yes on impeachment if a vote were held today.

“Please, nobody hang up the phone and say, ‘Amodei is Pelosi’s defender,’” he said.

Supporting Trump re-election

Amodei is chairman of Trump’s re-election campaign in Nevada, a state Trump lost by 27,000 votes in 2016. He spoke with acting White House Chief of Staff Nick Mulvaney on Friday to assure the administration that he was not falling in line with Democrats on impeachment.

“I now have a full appreciation of how the president feels,” Amodei said, addressing the way the media handled his comments.

If Amodei was trying to get some national attention for himself, it looks like he succeeded.

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